SOE Alum Robert Barnes Receives Honor

Richard Barnes speaking at a podium on a stageRichard Barnes, a Special Education graduate of UAB's School of Education and teacher from Creek View Elementary was named to select group of National Board Certified teachers invited to a special recognition at the White House.

Barnes recently earned National Board Certification from the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards and was one of 100 teachers in the nation to receive a White House invitation to attend the NCBT Forum on Effective Teaching in Washington, D.C. He was the only teacher from Alabama to be invited.

He and other colleagues from across the nation were honored with a special Certification Day. The event celebrated the accomplishments of these dedicated teachers and  included discussions about how undertaking the national boards process can lead to both improved instruction and enhanced leadership in the profession.

Barnes, who is in his seventh year of teaching students with autism and cognitive disabilities, was asked to give some remarks on these topics. He had the opportunity to meet President Barak Obama. The event  started with welcoming remarks from Melody Barnes from the White House Domestic Policy Council and then U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan spoke on the importance of striving for excellence in the teaching profession.

“I wanted to complete the national board certification process because I was looking for a challenge,” Barnes said. “I was chosen for this event to speak about the ways it improved my instruction by tailoring it to individual students and caused me to reflect on my previous leadership experiences. It also served as a catalyst for me to be more of leader on behalf of students with these unique ways of seeing the world.”